After a week and a half in the Western Ghats we said goodbye to the cool hills, and goodbye to the state of Tamil Nadu, and headed for the city of Mysore in Karnataka.
Nicknamed the City of Palaces, we wasted no time on our first day ‘ticking off’ the city’s famous main attraction, Mysore Palace.
The grandeur and beauty of the Palace was undeniable, more so inside than out, but the flocks of crowds and shepherding by security from room to room was a bit too intense for both of us.
As usual, we spent the majority of our quick stop in Mysore wandering the streets, enjoying taking photographs and experiencing the atmosphere; a relatively calm place but still a honking, bustling Indian city.
On our third and final day in Mysore we took on the thousand step climb to the top of the Chamundi Hill. Walking up past HUGE monkeys, each of the thousand steps had been marked by pilgrims with red, orange or yellow tilaka paint (the same paint Hindus put on their foreheads), which had created a really impressive effect as you looked up the seemingly endless steps.
As in all India, the summit was topped with a temple, and being a Saturday the place was busy with pilgrims, tourists and locals selling everything from chai and coconuts to the world’s tackiest teddies, clocks and fake handbags!
That evening we got on our overnight bus, headed for the coastal town of Gokarna, and received a big shock when we discovered we’d booked a ‘sleeper’ bus with private single or double bunks - luckily we’d got a double between us and weren’t sharing with any strangers!